Netflix is blessed with some of the best original content in the streaming world. Whether it’s a series like You or Wednesday or movies like The Gray Man, Marriage Story or Don’t Look Up, the streaming platform makes high-quality content of its own. However, it also has some of the finest classic movies in its midst too. That’s why we use Netflix Flashback to look back at an iconic moment in cinema history.
This week, we’re looking back at a true classic from Johnny Depp as he stars as George Jung, one of the world’s most iconic drug dealers. Based on a true story, Ted Demme directs the 2001 classic which not only gives a keen insight into the huge scale of the drug trade of the 1970s but the humanity that was lost within it.
Johnny Depp, an actor of incredible talent, has the protean ability to adapt to any role assigned to him. Having received various awards and accolades, it remains somewhat of a modern-day tragedy that Depp has yet to win an Academy Award despite three nominations for some of his best and most memorable roles. Here we see him ascend to one of his best on-screen moments.
George Jung is a young boy who belongs to a dysfunctional family that constantly struggles for survival. His father struggles to make a living while his mother is constantly nagging at him. The father finally goes bankrupt, and this incites fear within George, who does not want to end up like his father.
With a time skip to the 1960s, Tuna, a friend of George’s, advises the latter to deal marijuana to earn good money. George becomes a bigshot dealer and, after going to prison, discovers cocaine. He gets richer by bringing cocaine to the United States upon his release. However, nothing is without consequence.
Ironically, the director passed away exactly a year after the film’s release with indications of cocaine in his system. The cast, which also includes Penelope Cruz, was made to snort milk powder as a substitute for cocaine in the scenes. Johnny Depp had improvised many of his dialogues, which added a sense of realism to it. He interviewed the real George Jung to make his role more compelling, and he succeeded. Despite the film being a blow to the director’s reputation, Depp’s excellent performance helps shoulder it forward.
Watch Blow on Netflix now.